Please copy and distribute this page!

  • Type or machine-print all address information
  • Make sure print is clear and sharp
  • Ensure address characters don’t touch or overlap
  • Black ink on a white background is best
  • Maintain a uniform left margin
  • Use upper-case letters
  • Omit all punctuation (except the hyphen in the ZIP+4)
  • Include floor, suite, and apartment numbers whenever possible
  • Put the city, state, and ZIP Code or ZIP+4 Code in that order on the last line.
    If there’s not enough room, you can put the ZIP Code or ZIP+4 Code alone on
    the bottom line.
  • Use standard two-letter state abbreviations
  • When using window envelopes, make sure the complete address is always visible, even when the insert moves.
  • Leave one or two spaces between words and between the state abbreviation and ZIP Code or ZIP+4 Code.

area.gif (4688 bytes)

  1. The Address Area - The complete address should be located within this white area (no return address information). Extraneous (non-address) printing or markings should appear as high on the mail piece and as far away from the address as possible.
  2. Barcode Read Area - Please make sure this area remains clear of all printing. It’s reserved for the bar code that will be printed by the Optical Character Reader (OCR).